Mahindra & Mahindra is pushing new products and investments while strengthening production plans as it is “very optimistic” about the gradual evolution of electric vehicle penetration in the country over the next few years.
According to a senior company official, the Mumbai-based auto major expects the transition to electric mobility to be phased with the fleet and sport utility segments expected to transform the domestic market.
“Our internal research tells us that 25 percent of current SUV buyers would like to consider an electric SUV as their next purchase. Will see,” Mahindra & Mahindra executive director (auto and farm sector) Rajesh Jejurikar told PTI in an interaction.
He noted that five years from now, the company expects about 20-30 percent of its SUVs to be electric.
Betting big on green mobility, Mahindra has launched five new electric sports utility vehicles (SUVs) with the first four expected to hit the market between December 2024 and 2026.
The automaker plans to launch five electric SUV models under two brands XUV and an all-new electric-only brand called “BE”.
The legacy brands will come under the XUV marque while the all-new electric models will be introduced under the “BE” brand.
Explaining the trends, Jejurikar noted that electrification penetration in the domestic market will start with households owning more than one car. “Also the fleet segment will move to electric very quickly because it makes economic sense for them,” he added.
In the personal segment, however, take-up for electric hatchbacks and sedans will slow as customers will not like to pay higher prices for the only family car in the absence of adequate charging infrastructure, Jejurikar said.
“In the SUV space, whether entry or mid-size, there will be very rapid adoption as they are typically part of households that have more than one car,” he added. added.
When asked if the time has come for electric mobility to open up in the country, Jejurikar said: “It is both yes and no, currently the penetration is 1 per cent in C segment and around 4 per cent in B segment. .. Is it 1? And going from 4 percent overnight to 30 and 40 percent, no it’s not going to happen.”
He added: “But we are going to see steps towards 10 per cent to 15 per cent and that is why 20-30 per cent penetration in the next 4-5 years is a realistic roadmap for the segments in which we operate. are.”
Jejurikar said the company expects to finalize the manufacturing infrastructure for its electric sports utility vehicles in the next 3-6 months.
The company has already unveiled its first electric SUV under the XUV brand – the mid-size XUV 400 which will be launched from its Nashik plant in Maharashtra.
It is now in talks with 3-4 state governments to finalize the production plan for the rest of the products, considering the incentives to be offered. “We will probably have to make a decision in the next 3-6 months,” Jejurikar said.
He was responding to a question about how soon the company could finalize the production strategy.
Asked whether the company would go for the new facility or use its existing plants that manufacture its internal combustion engine (ICE) model range, he noted that it is yet to be finalised.
The carmaker currently manufactures its conventional ICE vehicles from plants in various states including Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.
On investments for the electric segment, Jejurikar noted that the company has already indicated that capital expenditure for electric programs will be between Rs 8,000-9,000 crore over a three-year period.
“This is an urgent funding requirement for our electrification strategy. It includes most investments around everything,” he said.
In July, impact investor British International Investments (BII) announced that it will invest Rs 1,925 crore in Mahindra & Mahindra’s new electric vehicle arm “EV Co”.
With a softening of the chip situation under the belt and record bookings for products like the Scorpio N and XUV 700, this could turn out to be the best festive season and year for the company in terms of sales.
“Hopefully yes,” Jejurikar said, when asked if the current financial year could turn out to be the best for the company in terms of sales.
On the chip supply situation, he said: “Many of the hurdles we had, we’ve been able to overcome.”
The company shipped around 30,000 SUVs to dealers last month, its highest ever wholesale sales in a month.
About the company opting for pure electric products over hybrids, Jejurikar said the move is in line with the roadmap presented by the government.
(Only the headline and image for this report may have been reworked by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content was generated automatically from a syndicated feed.)